MOVIE OF THE WEEK September 16, 2022: THE SILENT TWINS

As the saying goes, truth is often stranger than fiction — though in the case of Jennifer and June Gibbons, both their truth and their fiction were pretty out there. In The Silent Twins, director Agnieszka Smoczynska tells the fascinating story of the real-life identical twin sisters who grew up in Wales in the 1960s and ’70s, speaking only to each other and spinning elaborate fantasies both via felt dolls and through their prolific writing.

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THE SILENT TWINS – Review by Liz Whittemore

The real-life story of twin sisters June and Jennifer Gibbons continuously confounds psychologists and curious onlookers alike. As young girls from Barbados whose father transferred to Wales for for work, they were the only Black family in their neighborhood. The girls experienced insurmountable isolation and bullying. As a result, they turned inward, refusing to speak to anyone other than each other. The Gibbons sisters’ enigmatic relationship wreaked havoc on their family, community, and each other. The Silent Twins creatively illustrates their experiences. Theirs is a story that baffles the world.

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THE SILENT TWINS – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

Polish director Agnieszka Smoczynska serves up an edgy, unnerving and provocative drama with her latest movie The Silent Twins. Not since The Shining have female twins gotten so under my skin. This fictionalized true-life story focuses on June and Jennifer Gibbons, two Black sisters who grew up in Wales and stuck together. Both had a creative streak but they also had major mental illness issues, including incidents of self-harm and psychological woes.

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SPOTLIGHT February 2016: Agnieszka Smoczyńska, Filmmaker The Lure

agnieszka Smocz 2 small headshotOne of the happy surprises of the 2016 Sundance Film Festival was Polish Filmmaker Agnieszka Smoczyńska’s debut feature, The Lure, which premiered in the International Dramatic Competition. The film — a musical-fantasy-horror-romance hybrid — is an entirely engaging original. Read on…

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